NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Public health officials in at least two-thirds of U.S. states are sharing the addresses of people who have the coronavirus with first responders.
The AP review shows that public health officials in at least 35 states share the addresses of those who have tested positive for the coronavirus — provided by the state or local health departments to emergency dispatch centers that request it.
Thomas Saenz, president of the Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund, said law enforcement agencies should explain why they are collecting names or addresses and assure minority communities that the information won’t be turned over to the federal government.
In Ohio, Health Director Dr. Amy Acton issued an order April 24 requiring local health departments to provide emergency dispatchers the names and addresses of people within their jurisdictions who tested positive for COVID-19.
In Ohio’s Franklin County, which includes the state capital, health officials reported 914 confirmed and probable cases to dispatch agencies in May and April, but removed those names from the list after patients spent 14 days in isolation, said spokeswoman Mitzi Kline.